Meta and Google Executives takes hefty Bonuses amid Employees Layoff, workers grills Zuckerberg in a virtual meet

Large technology companies like Meta and Google have been laying off employees in recent times, while top executives continue to receive significant bonuses and compensation. Meta’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg faced tough questions during a virtual Q&A session from workers who grilled him about six-figure bonuses given to senior executives amid layoffs, according to reports by Entrepreneur.

Last week, Meta submitted a filing to the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) revealing that its top executives, such as Chief Financial Officer Susan Li, were awarded bonuses totaling $575,613. The Chief Product Officer also received a bonus. Chris Cox received $940,214, chief operating officer Javier Olivan, chief technology officer Andrew Bosworth, Strategy Officer (CSO) David Whener received $712,284 and former COO Sheryl Sandberg received $298,385. These bonuses were based on individual performance calculations, with a target percentage of 75 percent.

The Wall Street Journal reported that during the Q&A session, one employee asked Zuckerberg why the entire executive team got EE/GE ratings (top-tier performance reviews at Meta) when they were responsible for the decisions that led to layoffs of more than 20 percent of the company. The employee wanted to know where the accountability was. Some workers felt that Zuckerberg’s response was “shallow” and “patronising”.

According to the SEC filing, Sundar Pichai, the CEO of Alphabet and Google, received a compensation package worth nearly $226 million in 2022. Zuckerberg clarified that some executives were given bonuses due to their new roles and increased responsibilities.

 All five of the other top executives at Alphabet also received compensation in the millions for 2022, with an increase of at least nine million compared to the prior year.

The news of executives receiving large bonuses amid layoffs is not new. However, it is a matter of concern for the workers who have lost their jobs during the pandemic. Companies have been trying to cut costs to remain profitable during the uncertain economic times. At the same time, they have been paying top executives large sums of money, which has led to criticism from some workers and shareholders.